"Among the Bushmen, as among the Pygmies, there is almost complete equality between the sexes. There is also a shared sense of horror at the thought of violence and cruelty, including toward animals. Children and elders are cherished, and youngsters are taught that their most important resource is the goodwill of their neighbors. Their primary method for treating sicknesses of all kinds is a healing dance that brings the community together and maintains the profound spirit of sharing that the people see as all-important.
Healing dance may seem terribly primitive compared to modern healing methods such as gene manipulation and organ transplantation, but before we totally reject such practices we would be wise to remember that these are a people who have thrived for tens of thousands of years, something I seriously doubt people of the distant future will say about our current form of civilization. When it comes to the healing power of loving human connections, the Bushmen, like the Pygmies, seem to know a great deal that modern medicine and modern society as a whole may need to relearn if we are to survive."
--- John Robbins, Healthy at 100
This month's newsletter talks about a book called Healthy at 100 by John Robbins, which I highly recommend, and what we can learn from the world's longest living people. You can sign up for the newsletter to read the full post, but here's a little sneak peak:
It isn't uncommon in the cultures of these people - the Abkhasians (in Caucasus south of Russia), the Vilcabambans (in the South American Andes), the Hunzans (in Central Asia), and the elderly people from Okinawa (in southern Japan) - to have a large part of the population live past 100 years of age. These Centenarians form a whole new age group, which is missing from most societies. So what are their secrets to living such long, healthy lives?
I believe we can learn a lot from them. Above all, people in these cultures don't have much in terms of material possessions, and trivial things that are typical in the modern world don't matter to them. But they know how to care for one another! It's not uncommon for 3-4 generations to live under the same roof; food is shared and enjoyed together, the elderly are held in high regard for their wisdom and life experience, and nobody is left lonely. As a result, there is very little if any chronic diseases. The food they eat is clean, low in fat, and high in fresh vegetables and whole grains - this turns out to be a common element in all the abovementioned cultures. Finally, physical activity is a natural part of life. These people work hard until they die - retirement is not really a thing - and the elderly are actively involved in the community.
There are lots of great things about our modern world. But it appears to me that happiness is something we constantly try to search for, instead of realizing that it's right at the tip of our fingers.
Happy Vibes Project is, first and foremost, a space where I share my excitement and fascina-tion about being human. I have a tendency to fall into research rabbit holes on almost any topic from science & technology to film ma-king, philosophy, cultu-re, art ... and, of course, holistic health. Happi-ness only gets better when shared, so feel free to reach out if you have an interesting story or would like to con-tribute in any other way! <3